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tv   The Colbert Report  Comedy Central  May 9, 2012 1:30am-2:00am PDT

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>> jon: that's our show. join us tomorrow night at 11:00. here it is your moment of zen. >> billion l- and grace probably did more to educate the american public than almost anything anybody has ever done so far. >> seriously?
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captioning sponsored by medy central captioned by media access grou captioning sponsored by comedy central ( theme song playing ) ( cheers and applause ) [eagle caw] [cheers and applause] >> stephen: thank you so much. welcome to the report. thank you for joining us. nation -- thank you so much. [crowd chanting stephen] that's very nice. oh, thank you so much.
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[cheers and applause] you guys are congealing like a fine pudding. half laugh nation, the general election is underway, and i'm as giddy as a schoolgirl who will soon be denied birth control. [ laughter ] so far, the big players in 2012 are the super pacs, like colbert super pac - you know our [cheers and applause] motto, "making a better tomorrow, tomorrow!" i like you. [ laughter ] and i'm not the only one throwing around my unlimited corporate cash. campaign spending by groups like super pacs has jumped by more than 1100 percent since 2008. to put 1100 in perspective, that's the number of arabian nights plus the number of problems jay-z has. [ laughter ] those crumb-bums in washington are hearing our voice -- our
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bitchy bitchy voice. [ laughter ] because so far this year 70% of all presidential ads have been negative. that's not even counting the positive gingrich ads, which are still kind of negative because they include newt gingrich. [ laughter ] but all this negativity can have a downside for the donors. just listen to the ceo of karl rove's superpac american crossroads, steven law. he's so worried about the billionaires. >> we have some very large donors who contribute a significant amount and they are fully disclosed, they're not overly concerned about it. but there are some people who are concerned about a culture of intimidation. increasingly, people feel like there are reprisals against people who get involved in the political process. >> stephen: yes, secret billionaires are just trying to get involved in the political process -- the same way the secret service wanted to get involved with those prostitutes. [ laughter ]
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so to protect themselves from accountability, big donors need anonymity. like casino billionaire sheldon adelson, who almost singlehandedly funded newt gingrich's superpac "winning our future," which has recently been renamed "dodging our creditors." [ laughter ] well, now adelson is going underground, where it's possible he also originated. [ laughter ] he says, from now on, if he injects big bucks into this election "it will be to a c-4." he's talking about super-secret 501-c-4s, or as they're now called, "spooky pacs," which can accept unlimited money without ever disclosing their donors because they're technically social welfare organizations. their negative attack ads count as charity. in the same way that yelling,
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"get a job, you dirty bum" is a donation to the homeless. [ laughter ] of course, i have a spooky pac. colbert superpac shh. you know our motto: making a better tomorrow at a later date that's none of your goddamn business. [ laughter ] and for you transparency fetishists, i'm happy to now make my full legally-required disclosure. i have written the names of colbert superpac shh donors on my taint in butterscotch topping. [ laughter ] i invite the f.e.c. to audit it with their tongues. [ laughter ] [cheers and applause] no surprise, the trailblazer in spooky pacs is karl rove with
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crossroads gps last year, it received two anonymous $10 million donations. they were so secret, it's possible even karl doesn't know who they were from. he might have received them through his donation gloryhole. [ laughter ] and karl stands behind what he doesn't say. [ laughter ] crossroads gps recently gave $2.75 million to the center for individual freedom or cfif, [ laughter ] which is aggressively "toppling disclosure laws at the state level. so, that's karl rove giving anonymous political money to help keep political money anonymous. i believe that's what our founders envisioned for democracy! not those founders, jimmy, the anonymous ones in the back. [ laughter ]
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but, folks, today's heroic cryptocrats are being targeted by bullies like missouri senator claire mccaskill, who had the audacity to launch this attack ad against attack-ad launchers. >> they just keep coming back. secret money attacking claire mccaskill. these big oil and insurance companies don't want you to know who they are but claire mccaskill will fight them: always has, always will. >> stephen: you know, all that secret money is making claire mccaskill kind of look like a heroic underdog. could it be coming from -- claire mccaskill? [ laughter ] clearly, she's got a lot to answer for. here to answer: missouri senator claire mccaskill!
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thank you for coming here. >> thank you. >> stephen: thank you for join us. okay, all these good men want to do is run attack ads against you with money that is not traceable. why do you have to make that ugly? [ laughter ] >> because secret is usually ugly. you know, it's kind of sleazy, slimy, secret money that people -- >> stephen: no but datda. the money is not secret. the money is public. the men are secret. >> the folks giving the money are seek yet. >> stephen: are secret. would you lick to apologize to the money now. you called the money secret. or do you have something against money, ma'am? >> i'm pretty sure if missourians knew who was giving this money they would appreciate the enemies i've made. i think they'd be proud of me if they knew who was page for it
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because i don't think the folks looking after. >> stephen: if people knew, the men or women -- >> or women. >> stephen: might face attack ads you are facing. >> wouldn't that be unfair. [ laughter ] >> stephen: but their private individuals. you are a public figure. you deserve at takes ads -- attack ads. >> i certainly expect attack ads in commercial but what i don't expect is for it all to be secret. we're trying to fight back, stephen, with little bits of money. $5 >> stephen: you want $5. how much of this untraceable money has been running into to you so far? >> $4.3 million in anonymous money. >> stephen: you are shooting low with $5. >> i want lots of $5 i want millions to give $5.
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we'll clean this up to put a lot of little money in and take the big money out. >> stephen: why don't you get your own spooky pac? why not fight fire with fire instead of fighting fire by going oh, my god i'm on fire. >> i don't want a spooky pac. i want the voter it's look the who giffing me money and make up their mind. for the spooky pacs we don't know. we have no idea. i think that's the important part to find out. >> stephen: you think that's important. knowing where the money came from do you think it's important to the voters in missouri? >> they are not known for wanting people to show things? >> no, no, no, you've got that wrong. we are the show me state as you well know stephen. >> stephen: i have a colbert super pac. i have so much cash would you like some of it. >> can't ask you for it because that would be coordination which you well know is illegal.
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>> stephen: i was trying to entrap you in a federal crime. >> you were. >> stephen: good laidism missouri senator claire mccaskill, not a big fan of secret money. we'll be right back. [cheers and applause] ♪
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[cheers and applause] >> stephen: welcome back. folks, i am proud to announce that today is the official release date of my beloved "i am a pole and so can you." it's the heartwarming coming of age story of a pole searching for it's place in the world. it's the perfect gift for mother's day, father's day, graduation day, and all other days. [ laughter ] and you know it's good, because of this blurb. "the sad thing is, i like it!" maurice sendak. well the real sad thing is, mr. sendak died this morning at age 83. i was lucky to have interviewed him earlier this year, and tonight we'd like to show you just a few more things maurice had to say. thanks for sitting down with me today. this say real honor.
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>> no shit. >> stephen: no i'm not shitting you i mean it. what your favorite of your own books. >> i wished you would ask that question. >> stephen: glad i did then. >> i think the best is two books i've done. i can have two favorites. >> stephen: all right. >> one is called outside over there. >> stephen: terrifying. >> my attempt to do a book -- >> stephen: it's goblins that make ice babies and replace a child wit. >> what can i say? [ laughter ] i was very deeply in love with romantic art of the beginning of the 18th century, middle of the 18th century. mot -- mozart was dead and this beautiful thing came out of his generation. mozart being the best quality, best artist, the best everything. >> stephen: he's like the
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donald trump of classical music. >> i'm going to have to kill you. >> stephen: everything he does is gold plated that's quality. >> donald trump. you nailed him. there's another called higgley piggely pop. it's about a terrier, my dog i had. >> stephen: okay. >> his name was jette and she appeared in all my books until the time she died. it was the big book i wrote about her because i knew she was going to die soon. she was getting old. >> stephen: what happens in it? >> what happens in sit a little dog goes out into the world and leaves her master to find out is there more to life. the series of adventures she has when she proves her total
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inadequacy to almost everything that happens to her. [ laughter ] but she accepts that. that's the truth of her life. she must accept her inadequacy and failure to life up to expectations that others have over and she surely has and she ends up a sweet dog which she is. no one wanted anything more from her. >> stephen: did she return to him? >> no, she died. and she leaves him a letter saying if you ever come this way, look me up but i can't tell you how to get here. the book has had a very difficult life all of it. what is it a children's book? i don't have a clue. i'm famous for them. i write them. i illustrate them. i don't know what they are.
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i don't they why they are for children. >> stephen: i like that your work does not sugar coat childhood. i bring the pain, you keep it real. >> some people think it's not appropriate for children to suffer pain, read about it, think about it, feel about it. yet that's all they do. >> stephen: every moment of childhood is uncertainty. >> i think childhood say period of great torment where you learn all these things what is or what isn't? what you can and cannot do. it's very hard. >> stephen: what is the best thing a parent can do for a child? >> love him/her. >> stephen: what does that mean? >> take them for what they are. >> stephen: for of those you who don't know husband work, read his books. for those of you who don't read, they've got lots of pictures. i'm a bit of an artist i'll see if i can do a quick portrait.
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hold still. >> you want a profile or three quarter. >> stephen: closer to me like this. do you have a favorite book or anything? >> moby dick. >> stephen: moby dick. >> moby dick. >> stephen: and you always wear your glasses? >> yes. >> stephen: big sports fan are you? >> no. >> stephen: we'll say basketball. do you like to skateboard? [ laughter ] okay. maurice thank you so much. >> i enjoyed it.
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[cheers and applause] >> stephen: welcome back, everybody. my guest tonight is here with her book called the new jim-crow. i hope he's more fun than the old jim-crow. that guy was a jerk. please welcome michelle alexander. [cheers and applause] thank you so much for being here. you are a civil rights lawyer. you teach law at ohio state, correct? >> yes. >> stephen: you have a book here called the new jim-crow mass incarceration in the age of color blindness. >> yes. >> stephen: what do you mean the new jim-crow. we had an old jim-crow we got rid of that, right? >> it was a system of rules, laws, customs and practices that operated to lock african-americans into a
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permanent second class status authorizing legal discrimination against them in all walks of life. today we have a new system of racial and social control a system of mass incarceration that operates in ways eerily reminiscent of a system we supposedly left behind thanks to the war on drugs and get tough movement. >> stephen: you are going after my man ronald reagan now. >> yes, yes. >> stephen: reagan started the war on drugs. just say no. do you remember just say no. >> i remember that, yes i do. >> stephen: why did not black people just say no then? [ laughter ] are you saying black people are being incarcerated with the war on drugs. >> they are being incarcerated at a grossly disproportionate rate even though studies show that contrary to popular belief people of color do not use or sell illegal drugs at higher rates than whites. >> stephen: if that's the case
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that white people and black people do drugs at the same right why didn't david simon set the wire in greenwich, connecticut? >> perhaps he should have because but the show might have been more boring. >> stephen: you are saying white drug abusers are boring? black people have to be cooler that too? [ laughter ] >> people who use and sell drugs but also have jobs life in decent neighborhoods and all after this may not provide as much entertainment as people struggling for basic survival in poorer communities of color. >> stephen: i don't know if you are an african-american or not, okay? i don't see race. i don't even know what race i am. people tell me i'm white and i believe them because i get my drugs from a pharmacy. [ laughter ] but aren't we beyond sort of racial discrimination of any kind in this country? we have an african-american
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president. >> no, no. [ laughter ] >> stephen: what part of this don't you get? >> there's been a literal war waged against poorer communities of color. >> stephen: what is the answer. enough complaining what is the answer is? >> we need to end the war on drugs entoo irly. >> stephen: legalize drugs. >> we need to legalize marijuana. [cheers and applause] well, you know during 1990's during the period of the greatest escalation of the drug war nearly 80% of increase in arrests were marijuana possession. having them with charges for life. >> stephen: should we open the flood gates and let the people out of jail. that's not fair? >> believe we should return to the rates of incarceration for starters the rates we had in the 1970's before the war on drug and get tough movement kicked off. if we were to do that it would
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mean releasing four out of five people in prison today. our prison population has quintupled. >> stephen: four out of five people out of prison? it would be mad maximum culture snreets if we did that. >> the feeling that they are overly violent predators. >> stephen: they turn into muslims. i've seen the movies. >> most people swept into the criminal justice system are arrested for minor nonviolent and drug related offenses, crimes like marijuana possession. >> stephen: i'm saying it's simpler to just say no. right? you can release all the people from jail and get rid of the drug laws or just say no. your answer doesn't have the word just in it. >> it doesn't have that but it's just be fair. treat people of color as human
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beings worthy of dignity and respect and the same chances of life of people growing up in middle class white neighborhood who make the same kinds of mistakes but are not asked to pay for the rest of their lives for the mistakes and be regular gated -- >> stephen: best of luck. best of luck. michelle alexander, "the new jim crow." we'll be right back.